2018 showcased groundbreaking ways for restaurants to enhance their customer experience inside and outside of their four walls. Customer behaviors continued to move more towards video, food delivery, conscious consumerism, and personalized one-to-one marketing.
What does 2019 hold for us?
Instagram is all about video
“By 2021, mobile video will account for 78% of total mobile data traffic” – Instagram (2018). That’s when IGTV was announced, a blatant attack on YouTube, their next victim after Snapchat. IGTV focuses on long-form content. and it’s a key tool for well-resourced brands and restaurants – if you’re not quite there, don’t worry, highly accessible Instagram Stories have exploded with user adoption and popularity. improved functionality.
Instagram cemented its dominance over Snapchat and others in the 24-hour video game by launching nearly a dozen features on its Instagram Stories which now boast over 400 million daily active users. The new features boost businesses’ ability to engage customers through polls, Q&As, live streaming and Instagram highlights. In fact, Instagram Stories could cannibalize the permanent feed as more and more people scroll left to right on Instagram Stories before scrolling down.
Paid Facebook and Instagram ads become non-negotiable
Facebook’s organic reach was 2.27% in 2015 (currently less than 1%) and Instagram’s last announced organic reach was 30% a few years ago. hit virality. If you’re just posting organically, note that the main value is tagging you when people cross paths with you on their buyer journey, the effectiveness of those in gaining you new customers has gone down significantly.
If you want to be proactive in coming up with a new menu item, new revenue opportunity like delivery/catering, or a hiring announcement, to reach a highly targeted audience, paid ads are your answer. Here’s a neighborhood pub that leveraged paid ads in combination with influencers and video marketing to generate over $20,000 in incremental revenue in July.
Wi-Fi marketing is going mainstream and email marketing is making a comeback
As social media platforms continue to steal all the limelight, the highest converting platform of them all is getting a massive boost; email advertising. Sending low-value bulk emails to your entire email list risks losing customers forever, however, when it’s highly relevant to each contributor, they eagerly await your emails.
Thanks to the flood of WiFi marketing providers like Zenreach and Yelp-WiFi, more and more restaurants are offering free WiFi in exchange for basic customer data such as their emails and phone numbers. Each time a customer returns, this is automatically tracked by the software, allowing owners to send segmented emails with the utmost personalization accuracy based on the user’s displayed behavior.
For example, customers who come back ten times can get an instant reward via email and, on the contrary, customers who haven’t returned for a long time can be attracted by incentives that are exclusive to them. Canadian franchise Great Wings generated over $300,000 in revenue from WiFi email marketing campaigns in six months across nine locations.
Food delivery and artificial intelligence are starting to converge
“$200 billion – a quarter of all restaurant industry sales – will shift to digital ordering and delivery over the next five years.” Restaurant industry expert Piper Jaffray.
You’ve probably been following the rising trend in food delivery points, but maybe you weren’t aware of how fast it’s actually growing.
For owners who want to avoid the commissions of the Uber Eats of the world, many white label providers are starting to appear, providing you with the software to fulfill and deliver orders inexpensively. A key caveat, however, is that you need to have a strong marketing program to offset the marketing you would otherwise have on Uber Eats and the rest of the platforms.
To help focus internal marketing efforts on food delivery, companies like Say2Eat are using bot technology to allow merchants to retarget digital customers through Facebook, Twitter, SMS, and even the new voice assistants that many people are adding. to their holiday wish lists.
Conscious consumers prevail
75% of Millennials care if a company practices social responsibility instead of just making a profit. Goal-based marketing is an essential way to differentiate yourself and contribute to a local community. This trend ranges from charity events, donating proceeds from meals to charity through companies like Mealshare, or banning plastic straws – a trend that exploded in mid-2018.
Last July, Seattle became the first major city to ban the distribution of plastic straws and utensils, leading the Seattle-based Starbucks franchise to switch to strawless lids in its stores across the country. Shake Shack also recently joined the movement, and McDonald’s has set a target timeline of 2025 to phase out its own non-compostable utensils.